Reviews by Andres Sanchez

Hearts of Iron IV: Man the Guns Icon
It's a good HoI4 DLC... a very good one indeed
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - May 5th 2019

Man the Guns brings some features already developed for land combat to the sea. We've got new skills for admirals, and a whole new design system for ships and fleets.

HoI4 DLCs usually give us new content for countries. UK and USA new alternate history paths are good enough. Opting for Mexico or the Netherlands (instead of countries like Spain or Turkey) may seem not so urgent but they're fine.

Man the Guns improves HoI4 overall, and it gives you some new ways to play the USA or UK. Highly recommended.

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Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century Icon
This is not the Iberian Immersion Pack you were looking for
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - Dec 16th 2018

If you expect Golden Century to revamp the Iberian countries as Rule Britannia or Third Rome did with the British or Russian countries, you'll be disappointed. There's new content for those countries (new trees of missions, a few new features like "religious orders", and several events) but you won't have the feeling you're running a "special" country as you have with the ones visited in former expansions like the mentioned or Rights of Man (Prussia), Cradle of Civilization (Middle-Easter muslim countries), Mandate of Heaven (East Asia) or Dharma (Indian subcontinent).

That said, there's a few other features in the game (pirate republics, flagships...), but more "flavourish" than effective.

Golden Century is not "bad", but mediocre. Looking forward to a change of course in EU4.

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Stellaris: MegaCorp Icon
That's what an expansion should be
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - Dec 8th 2018

Sometimes expansions are recommended because the game is no longer "playable" without them. Sometimes it is because they enhace what the base game offers itselft. MegaCorp is one of the latter. You'll have the chance to play Stellaris in a (very) different way -like giant corporations capable of controlling interstellar trade- and interact with other empires and subjects as no one could do.

The finest expansion so far for one of the most interesting strategy/4X games out there.

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Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury Icon
Whole new life for CKII
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - Nov 25th 2018

CKII is a very special game in strategy... it's not very common a dynastic intrigues simulator.

After almost six years after it's great having new developments around the game, increasing greatly its gameplay. This expansion adds bloodlines, deeper Crusades, more ways to interact with your neighbours and means to trascend your mortal life and have an impact in everyone's life with sainthood.

Very recommendable.

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Europa Universalis IV: Dharma Icon
One of the best EU4 expansions
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - Sep 21st 2018

EU4 has been trying in its last DLCs to make the whole XV-XVIII centuries world an interesting place to play. This one is committed to bring life to the Indian subcontinent... and Dharma delivers.

But its main focus is more ambitious and general: making governments a more interesting and meaningful feature in EU4, which is now organized not in several "types" which changes at some cost but in a more organic way, with different steps you'll have to decide how your government will be organized as. Other additions include changes in trade (both centers of trade and trade companies), policies, etc.

In conclusion: highly satisfactory, strongly recommended.

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Stellaris: Distant Stars Story Pack Icon
Weakest Stellaris Story Pack, still interesting
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - May 29th 2018

Distant Stars is a story pack (mini-expansion) for Stellaris which adds to the exploration pahse (new events, anomalies...) as well as it brings new middle-game situations (Leviathans and a new sort of crisis/oportunity). The content is interesting but not as much as Leviathans or Synthetic Dawn (which is the best story pack so far).

Distant Stars also includes new music which is as good as usual.

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Crusader Kings II: The Reaper's Due Content Pack Icon
More good looking graphics for CKII
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - May 2nd 2018

This is a cosmetic DLC, it changes nothing related to gameplay. It adds new units for in-map advisors in Africa and Eastern Europe. It also adds some new portraits, which are the most importan cosmetic feature in CKII, in my opinion. This time for characters in Eastern Africa.

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Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia Icon
Good, though not mandatory
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - Apr 13th 2018

Among EU4's DLCs you'll find big expansions -changing general features- and "immersion packs", more suited to a country or small region. Rule Britannia is one of the latter.

As its name announces, there's a lot of content to the British Isles and their countries (especially England-United Kingdom). They get new missions, events, graphics... and Anglicanism is now a religion itself. In this way is similar to Third Rome (the "Russian" EU4's DLC).

But, unlike Third Rome, Rule Britannia also includes some universal features which make it more interesting. You don't need them but they're fun to play: innovativeness rewards going ahead in research; naval doctrines are a good addition to give more possibilities to your Armada; the IndustriaL Revolution broadens the late game.

In conclusion: a good addition to EU4, not just for those willing to play as England.

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Hearts of Iron IV: Waking the Tiger Icon
HoI4's Great Leap Forward
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - Mar 15th 2018

Waking the Tiger is the best expansion for HoI4 (so far), and in a similar way like others (Stellaris' Utopia) it basically deepens the new features added in the free patch. Esencially, more decisions and commanders management (more options for traits and special actions). It also includes new national focuses for Chinese actors and Japan (which improve dramatically a WWII theatre which was not working well in former iterations, like Sino-Japanese war). It also includes some alternative history options for Germany, which are fun to play. In conclusion, Waking the Tiger is a great leap forward -pun intentended ;)- for Hearts of Iron 4.

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Stellaris: Apocalypse Icon
Stellaris 2.0
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - Mar 7th 2018

First thing to say about Apocalypse is that it's an optional expansion. The most important changes and improvements that Stellaris has received are for free (included in 2.0 patch). This expansion improves mid and late game, allowing you the use of massive destruction weapons (hello, Death Star) and an ultimate class of spaceships (Titans). And it adds an interesting new actor to the game (Marauders) that plays like Hordes you can interact with (bribing them to avoid their razings, or directing them against your rivals). So... not essential but quite interesting.

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Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon Icon
A situational expansion for CKII
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - Feb 15th 2018

It's not a bad adittion to CKII but like some others only useful playing certain characters. Or, like this time, a certain location: the "far" East of the map. You've got now a powerful neighbour (Chinese Emperor), with its own agenda -more expansionist or isolationist- which, in addition to its internal/external status, will decide how you can interact with China and more importantly... How China will interact with you! (Invasions won't be easy to defeat).

Not as good as some of the last CKII expansions, fine if you want to try something different, specially in addition to other ones like Horse Lords.

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Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization Icon
A sub-par EU4 expansion
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - Dec 4th 2017

According to its general features, Cradle of Civilization is one of the weakest EU4 expansions but it improves greatly the gameplay as a muslim country.

Regarding its general features, army professionalism, though interesting, it's not as decisive as it seemed when presented; I don't think it'll make a standing army better than the extensive use of mercenaries (which I suppose it was one of the objectives). I find better the trade policies included, which boost the role of your merchants helping your spionage, your military, etc. I like also the "exploit development" feature, which allows you to save a manpower or money crisis impoverishing one of your provinces.

When Cradle of Civilization shines is when you're playing in Middle-East and/or as a muslim country. Lot of content and great government changes, specially in Ottomans, Mamluks and Timurids.

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Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn Story Pack Icon
How to make cool building a robotic empire in Stellaris
by Andres Sanchez, Spain - Oct 30th 2017

Synthetic Dawn is what you could expect from a Stellaris DLC. It's all about robots: they're now a playable species with their own features (quite distinctive), new event chains about them added and new graphics and music included. Not a revolutionary expansion but quite interesting if you want a new approach to Stellaris.

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